Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Did Williams Signal Footdragging Strategy?

This from H-L:
Williams calls for school changes
Wants to dump CATS, change math teaching

FRANKFORT — As Kentucky lawmakers return to Frankfort at noon Tuesday facing state budget woes, Senate President David Williams is calling for cost-saving measures before raising taxes.

Williams, R-Burkesville, said Monday that the state should consider changing how math is taught in public schools and scrapping the Commonwealth Accountability Testing System

He said the changes could save millions of dollars...

...Advocates of ending CATS say it does not adequately track individual student programs and that it has not prepared Kentucky students for higher studies or to compete with peers from other states.

The 1990 Kentucky Education Reform Act, or KERA, established much of the testing system.

Bob Sexton, executive director of the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence, said elimination of CATS "isn't a prudent step."

Millions of federal dollars to the state could be at risk if Kentucky abolishes the testing system, he said.

Asked whether eliminating CATS would save money this fiscal year, Williams said the Senate wants to consider the entire two-year budget.

He said the Senate wants to work with the governor but it is "not going to be rushed into anything." ...

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